Wireless Systems Design

Monolithic PA Lands In GSM/GPRS Market

Conventional power-amplifier (PA) modules comprise multiple die and numerous discretes. In contrast, the Si4300 from Silicon Laboratories uses only a single die on a small substrate. Aside from potentially entering the market as the smallest GSM PA solution, the Si4300 is a functionally complete monolithic GSM PA solution. It also is the first GSM PA solution to be implemented in CMOS. It was manufactured using TSMC's standard 0.35-µm CMOS process.

Compared to other solutions, the Si4300 reduces board space and component count by more than 70%. Because it is based on a patented new amplifier architecture, the Si4300 integrates all functions between the transceiver and the antenna switch module (ASM). Such functions include: complete power-control circuitry, thermal and load mismatch protection, harmonic filtering, and input and output matching networks. The Si4300 also provides a margin across operating conditions to the 3GPP specifications. As a result, system designers can quickly move from design, through full type approval (FTA), and into production.

The Si4300 PA complements the company's 100% CMOS Aero transceiver family. It is General Packet Radio Services (GPRS) Class 12 compatible. In addition, the Si4300 can be used in GPRS multi-slot applications. The monolithic GSM PA solution is available in a small (3.9×6.4×1.3-mm) surface-mount package.

The Si4300 is available in an 18-pin land-grid-array (LGA) package. Pricing for the Si4300 starts at $2.82 in quantities of 10,000. Samples are available now. Volume production will begin in the third quarter of this year.

Silicon Laboratories, Inc.
4635 Boston Ln., Austin, TX 78735; (512) 416-8500, FAX: (512) 464-9444, www.silabs.com.

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